America, Please Stop the Terror
By Omnia Mounir
A suspect or a victim?
7 seconds…. It took only 7 seconds for a policemen to shoot an unarmed black man twenty times in his grandparents' backyard in Sacramento, California. The violations against black citizens in the US are in a rising crisis since 2013.
Footage from a policeman's body camera and an overhead helicopter were released where the said suspect was being approached by a group of police officers. Two of the officers shouted for the man to show his hands clearly, then he was shot 20 times in a row only in 7 seconds, to find-out later that the suspect was only holding a white cellphone in his hand without any traces of an alleged firearm after inspecting the scene.
Even before the shooting went down, the body camera footage shows that one of the officers has suggested to advance the victim with a non-lethal weapon at first, but was fast cut-off with the gun firing. One of the officers also said that they couldn’t see his left hand.
The officers awaited the back-up even after the suspect has clearly collapsed on the ground with his iPhone beside his head as shown by the overhead helicopter footage. The victim was handcuffed after the arrival of back-up and a CPR routine was undertaken by the officers.
The police department later informed the victim’s family and commented that the suspect advanced toward the officers holding an object extended in front of him, the officers thought that he was pointing a handgun and didn’t release his identity to the public.
With this weak statement the victim’s family and fiance identified him as “Stephon Alonzo Clark”, 22 year old black male and father of two; 1 and 3 years old.
The department also didn’t mention any information about the investigations or how many times the victim was shot. The department also alleges that the victim has been breaking into several houses in the neighbourhood, but these accusations weren’t confirmed. Mayor Darell Steinberg has declared that the investigations will continue and must be completed before discussing the protocols of law enforcement and emergency aids.
The incident provoked the “Black Lives Matter” movement in Sacramento as it called it “a police murder” and the activists all around the world are hoping for the investigation’s final decision.
Taking us back to 2014 and the case of Chicago police department officer Jason Van Dyke who was charged with killing a 17 year old black teenager by shooting him 16 times. The former incident raises an important inquiry: Will Alonzo Clark get a fair trial? Will the judge’s decision be pressured and motivated by the media and activists as the leader attorney of the Van Dyke case claimed in the former case?
Here comes a message from not just the US citizens but from the whole world, if the system doesn’t want terrorists or racists then it must stop making them. It’s hard to believe that the victims’ families, children and friends won’t walk around with such an increasing grudge for the system. This also begs the following question: Does law enforcement training obligates police officers to act in a split-second and end the life of a suspect over unconfirmed suspicions!?
Police murders and unfair investigations destroy not only families, but also communities and as it took only a few seconds to end a life and watch the blood turn from red to grey on his skin. It won’t take more to end countries with the corruption and baseness of protocols performances, therefore a fair assessment of the enforcement protocols execution and facilities and police shooting must be carried-out now and on the long-run.
My dear reader, we’re all victims of a system, no matter how, where, or when we live.